October 10th, 2015

Tech Tip: Coping with Corrosive Ammo

Corrosive Ammo ammunition
Scary stuff — AK-74 after firing corrosive ammo and not being cleaned for a week.
Image courtesy

corrosive ammunition ammo BrownellsNo doubt you’ve heard the term “corrosive” used with respect to ammunition. But what exactly is “corrosive ammunition” (and how does it different from non-corrosive ammo)? What is the chemistry that leads to corrosion, and what cleaning procedures should you follow if you shoot corrosive ammunition? Brownells has come up with answers to these and other questions in a helpful TECH TIP video about corrosive ammo.

In this informative video, Brownells gun tech Steve Ostrem explains the primer-related chemistry that makes some ammo corrosive. The video then reviews suggested cleaning procedures you should follow after you have fired corrosive ammo through any firearms.

What Is “Corrosive” Ammunition?
What makes ammo “corrosive”? Generally speaking, primers are the problem. When corrosive ammunition is fired, the ignited primers leave a residue of corrosive salts. Typically these primers contain potassium chlorate, or sodium petrochlorate which, when burned, change into potassium chloride or sodium chloride. Sodium chloride is also known as common table salt.

Potassium chloride and sodium chloride are both very hygroscopic (i.e. they attract water). Because of that, these alkalis are rust generators. When exposed to the hydrogen and oxygen in the air (and moisture) potassium chloride and sodium chloride can form an acid that quickly causes metal rifle parts to rust and pit.

Given a choice, you may wish to avoid corrosive ammo altogether. However, for some types of fire-arms, particularly older military-style rifles, the most affordable ammunition may be corrosive. If you choose to use corrosive ammo, it is important to clean the gun thoroughly after use. After firing, you want to use an element that will neutralize the primer salts. Brownells suggests a water soak (see video above). Alternatively, Windex with ammonia can help neutralize the salts, but that doesn’t finish the job. After the salts have been neutralized and flushed away, basic anti-corrosion protectant (such as Eezox or other gun oil) should be applied to all metal parts.

To learn more about the proper procedures for cleaning rifles exposed to corrosive ammo, we suggest an article by Paul Markel on Ammoland.com. Markel, host of the popular Student of the Gun TV series, states that: “Windex (with ammonia) is the Corrosive Ammo shooter’s best friend. After you are done shooting your corrosive ammunition for the day, squirt the window cleaner liberally from the chamber down the barrel. Pull the bolt / bolt carrier / op rod if there is one and douse them as well. A couple of old cotton t-shirts will come in handy. A cotton barrel swab is a nice accessory but you can make do with patches. Some folks will rinse all of the ammonia and loosened corrosive salts off with hot water. Others prefer to wipe it all down and let the ammonia evaporate. Either way, once the corrosive salts have been tackled with the window cleaner, it is time for an all-purpose brush (old toothbrush) and some gun oil.” READ Full Article by Paul Markel.

Video Tip from EdLongrange. We welcome reader submissions.
Permalink Tech Tip 1 Comment »
October 10th, 2015

Create and Print Your Own Custom PDF Targets

Free downloadable targets

AccurateShooter.com has a HUGE collection of FREE downloadable PDF targets. We offer a very wide range of target designs: Load Development Grids, NRA Bullseye targets, Official-Size BR targets, Realistic Varmint Targets, Silhouette Shapes, Fun Plinking Targets, and even specialized tactical training targets. If our collection of free targets isn’t enough, or if you want to create a new kind of target — you’re in luck. There’s an Australian-based interactive website, PrintTargets.net that allows you to create your own customized, printable PDF targets.

CLICK Graphic to Create Your Own Targets.
Free downloadable targets

Just follow the step-by-step instructions to set paper size, layout, bullseye color, line thickness, number of rings and diameter. You can even add Score Numbers to your target rings. PrintTargets.net is easy and fun to use. It’s much faster to create targets this way than to try to draw a series of circles with PowerPoint or MS Paint. Power-User tip: PrintTargets.net even offers a handy diamond-grid calibration diagram that you can add to your custom target designs. You’ll find the calibration grid as option #15 when you design your target — just scroll all the way down the PrintTargets.net home page.

CLICK HERE to Design Your Own Downloadable Targets

Permalink Shooting Skills 1 Comment »
October 9th, 2015

Rimfire Sporter — Fun Way to Start Competitive Shooting

BRRC Rimfire Sporter CMP match

Readers often ask us: “Is there an inexpensive way I can get started in position shooting?” The answer is “yes” — across the country CMP-affiliated clubs host Rimfire Sporter matches. You can use a wide variety of .22LR rimfire rifles — manual actions (such as a Winchester model 52) or semi-automatics (such as a Ruger 10/22). There are prone, sitting/kneeling, and standing stages. CMP rules provide separate classifications for scoped rifles, open-sighted rifles, and aperature-sighted rifles. The matches are fun, the ammo is inexpensive, and everyone has a good time while improving their marksmanship.

BRRC Rimfire Sporter CMP matchOur friend Dennis Santiago recently helped run a CMP Rimfire Sporter Match in Southern California. Dennis reports: “You want something challenging? Well that X-Ring 50 yards away is the diameter of a 50 cent piece, and there are people out there that can womp that thing with iron sights.”

The rapid-fire sitting or kneeling stage of a CMP-sanctioned .22 Sporter Match consists of two, 5-shot strings. A manually-operated or semi-automatic rifle may be used for this match. Below is a video Dennis made that shows a sitting/kneeling rapid fire stage.

Dennis notes: “There are six (6) stages of fire on a tough little target. Notice the rifles that can be used run the gamut from pump and bolt actions to variations on the semi-auto theme. All still require a good eye and a steady hold to earn one’s bragging rights for the day. A match takes about an hour and a half per relay. The slowest part of the match is initial sighting in. It’ll take longer than the allocated 5 minutes for the typical first timer coming to a club match.”

BRRC Rimfire Sporter CMP match

At Dennis’s Burbank Rifle & Revolver Club (BRRC), procedures are modified a little bit: “What we typically do at BRRC is run two relays. Experienced competitors shoot per the full rulebook. New shooters are afforded a bit more relaxed environment to make the experience more fun and inviting. We do the same thing in our M-1 Garand Clinic/Match series.”

Rimfire Sporter Match Basics
The CMP Rimfire Sporter Rifle Match is an inexpensive, fun-oriented competition using .22 caliber sporter rifles (plinking and small game rifles) commonly owned by most gun enthusiasts. To compete, all you need is a basic rifle, safety gear, and ammunition. No fancy, high-dollar rifles are required.

Rimfire Sporter Guide ShootingThe event is shot with standard sporter-type, rimfire rifles weighing no more than 7 ½ lbs, with sights and sling. Rifles may be manually-operated or semi-automatic. Shooters with manually-operated actions are given extra time in the rapid-fire stage to compensate for the difference. (See Video).

There are three classes of competition — the standard “O Class” for open-sighted rifles, “T-Class” for telescope-sighted and rear aperture-sighted rifles and “Tactical Rimfire” class, which is a .22 caliber A4 or AR15 style rifle. Firing for all classes is done at 50 and 25 yards on a target with a 1.78″ ten-ring and an 18″ outer one-ring. Even new shooters can get hits on this target, but it’s still tough enough that no one yet has fired a perfect 600×600 score.

The Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP) has a CMP Guide to Rimfire Sporter Shooting. This FREE, 50-page digital publication covers equipment, positions, course of fire, rules, scoring and much more. You’ll find helpful “how-to” sections on aiming, sight picture, hold control, and trigger control. Reading these instructional sections can benefit any prone or three-position competitive shooter.

Permalink Competition, Shooting Skills 2 Comments »
October 9th, 2015

Soft Cases for (Very) Long Rifles


Many shooters prefer to use padded soft cases for their guns. These weigh less, take up less room in vehicles, and store more easily. Unfortunately most soft rifle cases on the market are too short (or not tall enough) to handle scoped rifles with 29″ or longer barrels, particularly if a muzzle brake or extended front site hanger is attached. You can find long soft cases designed for shotguns or long-barreled black powder rifles, but these typically do not have enough clearance (top to bottom) to handle bulky target scopes. Where can you find a quality soft case for a scoped F-Class or Palma rifle with 30″ or longer barrel, making the rifle at least 50-51″ in overall length? Here are some suggestions.

55″ Bald Eagle Match Rifle Case
A good combination of features and value is the 55″-long Bald Eagle soft case from Bullets.com. This case was designed for match competitors with long-barreled rifles (with barrels from 29″ to 32″). This case fits both scoped and iron-sight rifles, and has quality zippers and heavy-duty padding. Large, zippered storage compartments hold log books, chamber flags, and other gear. Available in two popular colors, red and black, this case measures 55″ long, 13″ tall on back end and 6″ tall on front end. It is currently on sale for $57.95. Bullets.com also sells 60″ soft cases, and 50″ soft cases to fit rifles with both longer and shorter OALs.

Extreme 52

Creedmoor Sports 5252″ Creedmoor Sports Soft Case
At the request of many High Power shooters, Creedmoor Sports has created a high-grade 52″x10″ softcase. That’s tall and long enough to fit a Tubb 2000, or AR-based spacegun with long barrel. The Creedmoor case is one quality offering, with nice 1″ thick close-cell foam padding plus tough Cordura nylon on the outside and nylon pack cloth on the inside. Both materials are urethane-coated for water proofing. Another nice feature are the integral backpack straps (see photo left). These free your hands to carry rests, spotting scopes or other gear.

The Creedmoor 52″x10″ case comes in Forest Green ($66.95, N152A), and Royal Blue ($76.95, N152C). Creedmoor also offers a similar, slightly smaller 48″x12″ case for Service Rifles in Green or Blue.

52″ Midsouth Gun Case
For those on a tight budget, Midsouth Shooters Supply offers an Extreme 52″ padded gun case for just $23.00 (item #208-BD240-52). This thickly-padded case is high enough in the center to fit most scoped rifles — even with big Nightforce scopes. Made by Bulldog Cases, the all-black Extreme 52″ case features a soft faux-fur inner lining, an external accessory pocket, and a removable shoulder strap.

Extreme 52

Permalink Gear Review 6 Comments »
October 9th, 2015

FrogLube Now Available at Amazon.com and Major Retailers

FrogLogIf you’ve been following the tactical message boards, you’ll hear a lot of buzz about FrogLube CLP. Among the zillions of gun cleaner/lubes on the market, FrogLube stands out for its ability to work well even in challenging environments. Intended for U.S. Navy SEAL operators’ use in extreme environments, FrogLube was developed by Larry Lasky (Captain, USN retired), a former Navy SEAL officer. FrogLube’s blend of ingredients has been extensively field tested. The makers of FrogLube claim that fouling is dramatically reduced in FrogLube-treated firearms. FrogLube is a decent carbon-cutter and it also provides protection against rust and corrosion (though there are better rust preventers on the market, such as Eezox).

NOTE: Don’t expect FrogLube to remove copper fouling in the barrel — you’ll need a real copper solvent, such as Montana X-Treme. Overall, though, as a general purpose CLP, FrogLube performs well.

FrogLube is now available from major vendors, including Amazon.com and MidwayUSA. Notably, FrogLube is a “green” product that has received the USDA’s BioPreferred designation. On Amazon.com, a 5-piece combo kit with CLP liquid, CLP paste FrogLube, and FrogLube Solvent sells for $30.95 with FREE Shipping (on orders over $35). Amazon’s customers have raved about this stuff:

I was introduced to this product by a Sig armorer. I tried it. I loved it. It works. Period. Just like everyone else is saying here. Here is my break down of it as a CLP. The “C”: I have found that putting it on warm metal makes it work great…just like they say. I rub the paste on, let it sit and penetrate. A few minutes later….wipe it off. Clean enough to eat on. I even tried it on my mountain bike chain and components after running out of degreaser. Worked better than anything I have ever tried. The “L”: Once you use it on the parts you will notice it’s still there, having saturated the parts. Great for lube and goes a long way. The “P”: I hunt waterfowl in very rugged and sloppy conditions. The thing about this product is that when they say it saturates the metal, it truly does. Great protective features. It’s still on there and after all that moisture not speck of rust anywhere, unlike even the best of of other CLPs. — J. Zabick

Crazy Good — This stuff is amazing. I use it on my knives, razors and, of course, guns. It smells great, leaves no oily residue and cleans like nothing else I have used. Get the paste and the oil because sometimes the oil is called for and sometimes you need the paste. Can’t recommend it enough. I have already ordered more. — K. Chariton

Permalink Gear Review, New Product 6 Comments »
October 9th, 2015

Norma Video Shows Production of Bullets, Brass, and Ammo

Norma has released a fascinating video showing how bullet, brass, and ammunition are produced at the Norma Precision AB factory which first opened in 1902. You can see how cartridges are made starting with brass disks, then formed into shape through a series of processes, including “hitting [the cup] with a 30-ton hammer”. After annealing (shown at 0:08″), samples from every batch of brass are analyzed (at multiple points along the case length) to check metal grain structure and hardness. Before packing, each case is visually inspected by a human being (3:27″ time-mark).

The video also shows how bullets are made from jackets and lead cores. Finally, you can watch the loading machines that fill cases with powder, seat the bullets, and then transport the loaded rounds to the packing system. In his enthusiasm, the reporter/narrator does sometimes confuse the term “bullets” and “rounds” (5:00″), but you can figure out what he means. We definitely recommend watching this video. It’s fascinating to see 110-year-old sorting devices on the assembly line right next to state-of-the art, digitally-controlled production machinery.

Video tip by EdLongrange. We welcome reader submissions.
Permalink - Videos, Bullets, Brass, Ammo 1 Comment »
October 8th, 2015

The Rimfire Wheelgun — Why You Really Need One

Smith Wesson 22 .22 LR Revolver model 63 17 617 wheelgun revolver cylinder

“But Honey, I really do need a new gun….”

If you are looking for justification for getting a new handgun, show your spouse this article. Today we explain why every serious shooter should have a .22 LR wheelgun. Rimfire revolvers are versatile, reliable, easy-to-operate, and fun to shoot. A good .22 revolver will be considerably more accurate than 90% of the self-loading pistols you could buy. With a good a .22-caliber rimfire revolver you will learn sight alignment and trigger control. Plus you can practice with inexpensive ammunition.

The better .22 LR revolvers also hold their value. In particular, a Smith & Wesson model 617 (or its predecessor, the Model 17, shown below) is a good investment. You could use your S&W wheelgun all your life and then pass it on to your kids. If you or your heirs ever wear out the barrel or cylinder, Smith & Wesson will replace the parts for free, forever. Think about that…

Smith Wesson 22 .22 LR Revolver model 63 17 617 wheelgun revolver cylinder

The Model 63 Kit Gun is a compact 6-shot (older) or 8-shot (newer) revolver. Older Model 63s are in high demand, so this is another Smith wheelgun that holds its value well…

Smith Wesson 22 .22 LR Revolver model 63 17 617 wheelgun revolver cylinder

Smith Wesson model 617 4 inchSmith & Wesson Model 617 — Smith’s model 617 is extremely accurate, with a very crisp trigger (in single-action mode), and good sights. You can learn all the fundamentals with this ultra-reliable handgun, shooting inexpensive .22 LR ammo. The model 617 is rugged, durable, and can give you a lifetime of shooting fun.

Once you have mastered the basics of shooting with a .22 LR, you can move on to larger caliber handguns suitable for self-defense. Below is a slide-show illustrating a S&W model 617 ten-shot, with 6″ barrel. S&W also makes a 4″-barrel version of this revolver. (See: Shooting Demo Video with 4″ model 617.)

Permalink Handguns 3 Comments »
October 8th, 2015

Learn Position Shooting Techniques from Gary Anderson

rimfire sporter position shooting Gary Anderson

Want to learn the basics of position shooting? Then you should check out an article by Gary Anderson, DCM Emeritus, in On the Mark digital magazine (Summer 2014, pp. 6-13). This article covers all the key elements: body position (prone, sitting, standing), sling use/adjustment, sight picture, aiming process, and trigger control. While this 8-page article was specifically written for Rimfire Sporter shooters, the techniques described by Anderson apply to all types of position shooting, whether you shoot air rifles, smallbore rifles, or centerfire rifles.

CLICK HERE to load On the Mark eZine and Read Gary Anderson Article (page 6-13)
NOTE: This is a large PDF Document — it may take some time to fully load.

Here’s what Anderson says about aiming — how to keep your sights steady and get them centered on the middle of the target:

Trigger Contact and Center
rimfire sporter position shooting Gary AndersonAs soon as aiming at the target begins, the index finger must move from the trigger-guard to contact the trigger. It is important to get initial pressure on the trigger as soon as aiming begins. Then the shooter must focus on the sight picture and centering the sight picture movements over the aiming point. No one, not even champion shooters, can hold the aligned sights perfectly still. The sights are going to move a little bit or a lot, depending on the shooter’s skill level. The secret is to center those sight picture movements over the aiming point on the target (see trace illustration) before pulling the trigger.

When the sight picture movements on the target are centered, the last step in firing the shot is to add… smooth pressure on the trigger until the shot breaks.

Anderson also discusses the 5 Basics of Shot Technique:

rimfire sporter position shooting Gary Anderson

Permalink Shooting Skills Post comment »
October 8th, 2015

Tipton Gun Vise On Sale for $39.99 with Free Shipping

best gun vise

The Tipton Gun Vise is ON SALE for just $39.99 at Amazon.com. That’s a 22% savings over the normal $50.99 price at MidwayUSA. Plus, at the current time, Amazon.com is offering FREE Shipping (subject to change). That’s a very good deal for a tough, versatile product you’ll use for years. This Editor has used one of these for more than a decade (with all sorts of rifles) and it is still going strong.

Owner/User Report
MidwayUSA tipton gun viseThis Editor owns one of these injection-molded gun cradles. It has handled everything from an 18″-barreled lever gun to a 32″-barreled F-Class rifle. The unit works well for many tasks: cleaning barrels, stock refinishing/bedding, scope mounting, trigger adjusting, bore-scoping barrels, and checking throat length with a Hornady OAL tool. To be honest, I can’t understand how any serious shooter can get along without a product such as this (MTM makes a similar plastic cleaning cradle). That said, the unit isn’t perfect. We did find a couple very nose-heavy 1000-yard benchrest rifles that were not stable on the Tipton. This gun vise will NOT fit rifles with forearms wider than 3 inches. And if your butt-stock is very shallow (vertically) from comb down to toe, it may not fit the clamping system very well.

There are a number of smart features on the Tipton Gun Vise. First it’s made of solvent-resistant plastic. I’ve spilled just about every “miracle bore cleaner” you can name and nothing has harmed the plastic so far. Second, the front support has a dual-profile rubber pad with a flat section for benchrest rifles plus a “V” in the middle for narrow-forearm rifles. Third, the base section has handy cut-outs that hold solvent bottles or patches. Some people complain that the 8-lb Tipton Gun Vise is too light. While I understand that concern, the Vise is stable in use and I like the fact that I can easily pick up the whole unit with one hand and move it around the loading room. You can always add weight.

Permalink Gear Review, Hot Deals 1 Comment »
October 7th, 2015

Tuner/Brakes — Dial in Smaller Groups and Less Recoil

RAS Rifle Accuracy System Tuner

RAS Rifle Accuracy System TunerTuners work. So do muzzle brakes. But until recently, you had the choice of one or the other. Now with combo tuner/brakes you can tune the harmonics of your rifle barrel while enjoying significantly reduced recoil (and torque). This is a “Win-Win” for shooters of heavy-recoiling rifles.

Rifle accuracy and precision have come a long way in the past 15 years, particularly for long-range applications. The most recent tool to significantly improve precision is the barrel tuning system. The Rifle Accuracy System (RAS) developed by Precision Rifle Systems, incorporates a precision muzzle brake with the tuner. CLICK HERE for Product INFO.

This system potentially offers meaningful group size reduction through control of barrel harmonics. The RAS tuner/brake system was the subject of a June 2012 Precision Shooting (PS) magazine article, titled “Improved Rifle Accuracy” and was also featured in an article in the November 2012 issue of PS titled “Tuning with Confidence”.

READ MORE about RAS Tuner Tests on .260 AI, .223 Rem, and 22LR rimfire rifles.

Copies of both articles and detailed instructions on RAS installation and tuning can be downloaded from www.bostromgunsmithing.com. Eric Bostrom is the distributor for the RAS.

RAS Rifle Accuracy System Tuner

Permalink Gear Review, Gunsmithing 1 Comment »
October 7th, 2015

Timney Triggers Made with State-of-the-Art Automated Machinery

Timney Triggers Factory Tom McHale Scottsdale Arizona CNC

For years, Timney triggers have been popular drop-in upgrades for hunting rifles, rimfire rifles, and AR platform rifles. To meet the demand for its many trigger products, Timney Triggers has expanded its operation, adding state-of-the-art CNC machines and other high-end, automated equipment. A far cry from the dank gun factories of the 1950s and 1960s, Timney’s Arizona production center now resembles the squeaky-clean, ultra-modern facilities where electronics are assembled.

Today’s Timney factory is all about computerized automation. Timney Triggers’ owner John Vehr states that it would take 60 or more trained machinists and metal-workers to produce as many triggers as can Timney’s modern machines. Timney does employ two dozen workers, but they are assigned tasks that the computerized machines can’t do as well or better.

If you want to see how Timney triggers are made this days, check out Tom McHale’s recent account of his visit to the Timney Factory in Scottsdale, Arizona. McHale explains how the triggers are designed and fabricated, and 20 high-rez photos illustrate the production process and machinery.

Read the rest of this entry »

Permalink - Articles, Gunsmithing 1 Comment »
October 7th, 2015

White/Black Shoot-N-C Targets for Long Range Practice

Here’s a unique product that may be useful for practice sessions at 400 yards and beyond. Birchwood Casey now offers high-contrast, White/Black versions of its popular Shoot-N-C targets. There are four types of Shoot-N-C White/Black targets: 8″ Bulls-Eye X (#34802), 12″ Bulls-Eye X (#34019), and 12″ multi-diamond target (#34219), and 12″ x 18″ silhouette (#34615).

On all White/Black Shoot-N-C target types, the target background is all-white, and a large black “halo” or circle appears around each bullet hole. This makes the bullet impact much easier to see at long range. Normally it is very difficult to see 6mm (and smaller) bullet holes past 500 yards or so, unless conditions are absolutely perfect. At 800 or 1000 yards it can be nearly impossible to see even 30-caliber bullet holes in conventional paper targets. With these new white/black Shoot-N-C targets the large black ring surrounding each hit can be seen fairly easily, even at extreme ranges. NOTE: These targets work great with a target-cam — even if you have a monochrome monitor.

Read the rest of this entry »

Permalink - Videos, New Product 5 Comments »
October 6th, 2015

Rust Blocker Comparison Test — Video Reveals the Ugly Truth

See Results of Anti-Corrosion Product Test in Video

YouTube Link: http://youtu.be/uOB5eCReAQY

What anti-corrosion products really fight rust effectively? You’ll hear many opinions, but what do actual field tests reveal? One rifle shooter, who posts on YouTube as BlueonGoldZ, wanted to separate myth (and marketing claims) from reality, so he completed his own long-term rust test using metal samples. First he used ordinary tap water spray, and then he did a second, longer-duration test with a salt-spray solution. Nine different products were tested: Break Free CLP, Corrosion-X, Frog Lube, M-Pro 7, Outers, Pro-Shot Zero Friction, Rem Oil, Slip 2000, and Tetra Gun Triple Action CLP.

Rust Corrosion test video

BlueonGoldZ initially examined each product for its “beading” properties with a normal tap water spray. But the main test involved many multiple weeks of exposure after a “dense” salt-water spray. (No rust formed after two weeks tap water exposure, so the test was accelerated with salt-water exposure).

Read the rest of this entry »

Permalink - Videos, Gear Review 1 Comment »
October 6th, 2015

Sinclair Full-Length Sizing Die Shims

Sinclair Die Shims

When your cases become hard to extract, or you feel a stiff bolt lift when removing a cartridge, it’s probably time to full-length size your cases, and “bump” the shoulder back. With a hunting load, shoulder bumping may only be required every 4-5 loading cycles. Short-range benchrest shooters, running higher pressures, typically full-length size every load cycle, bumping the shoulder .001-.002″. High Power shooters with gas guns generally full-length size every time, and may need to bump the shoulders .003″ or more to ensure reliable feeding and extraction.

Use Shims for Precise Control of Shoulder Bump
Some shooters like to set the “default” position for their full-length die to have an “ample” .003″ or .004″ shoulder bump. When they need less bump, a simple way to reduce the amount of shoulder movement is to use precision shims in .001″ (one-thousandth) increments.

Here are reports from Forum members who use the shims:

“Great product. I have my die lock ring(s) adjusted for the shortest headspace length on my multiple chambers 6BRs and 6PPCs. When needing a longer headspace, I just refer to my notes and add the appropriate shim under the lock ring. Keep it simple.” — F.D. Shuster

Mats Johansson writes: “I’ve been using [shims] since Skip Otto (of BR fame) came out with them. I set up my dies with the .006″ shim, giving me the option of bumping the shoulder a bit more when the brass gets old and hardens while still having room to adjust up for zero headspace, should I have missed the original setup by a thou or two. Hunting rounds can easily be bumped an extra .002-.003″ for positive, no-crush feeding. Being a safety-oriented cheapskate, I couldn’t live without them — they let me reload my cases a gazillion times without dangerous web-stretching. Shims are a must-have, as simple as that.” — Mats Johansson

Sinclair Die ShimsSinclair Int’l offers a seven-piece set of Sizing Die Shims that let you adjust the height of your die (and thereby the amount of bump and sizing) in precise .001″ increments. Sinclair explains: “Some handloaders will set their die up to achieve maximum sizing and then progressively use Sinclair Die Shims between the lock ring and the press head to move the die away from the shellholder. Doing this allows you to leave the lock ring in the same position. These shims are usually available in increments of .001″ and work very well.”

Seven Shims from .003″ to .010″
Sinclair’s $12.49 Die Shim Kit (item 22400) includes seven shims in thicknesses of .003, .004, .005, .006, .007, .008, and .010. For ease of use, shim thickness is indicated by the number of notches cut in the outer edge of each shim. Even without looking you can “count” the notches by feel.

Permalink Reloading 10 Comments »
October 5th, 2015

Bargain-Finder 3: AccurateShooter’s Deals of the Week

Accurateshooter Bargain Finder Deals of Week

At the request of our readers, we have launched a new “Deals of the Week” feature. If this proves popular, we’ll try to run this every Monday. Here are some of the best deals on hardware, reloading components, and shooting accessories. Be aware that sale prices are subject to change, and once clearance inventory is sold, it’s gone for good. You snooze you lose.

1. Bullets.com — Clearance on RCBS Presses and Reloading Kits

AccurateShooter Deals of week bargain discount savings Bullets.com RCBS Press Progressive Partner Kit Clearance Reloader

Bullets.com is clearing out all RCBS inventory. That means big savings on quality products. The Reloader Special is good choice for those who want a second press with a smaller footprint. This Editor owns an RCBS 2000 Progressive Press and can recommend it. I have used Dillon presses extensively. I prefer the RCBS rotary powder measure and I believe the RCBS strip priming system is safer than systems which stack primers vertically. The Partner Press Kit includes: compact reloading press, balance-beam scale, case lube pad + lube, loading tray, powder funnel, neck brushes, deburring tool, AND a Speer Reloading Manual. Hard to beat that for $155.00!

2. Sportsman’s Guide — Frankford Arsenal Case Tumbler Kit

AccurateShooter Deals of week bargain discount savings Frankford Arsenal Case Tumbler Kit Media Separator bargain sportmans Guide

For just $69.99, this Frankford Arsenal Kit provides everything you need to clean brass: Vibratory Tumbler, Rotary Media Separator, Bucket, Corn Cob Media (3 lbs.), and Brass Polish. The Case Tumbler holds up to 600 9mm cases or 350 .223 Rem cases. The separator system is generous, with a 3.5-gallon bucket. NOTE: Sportsman’s Guide Buyers Club members can purchase for $62.99.

3. Harbor Freight – 8-Drawer Wood Tool Chest

AccurateShooter Deals of week bargain discount savings Wood Tool Chest Harbor Freight

This Wood Tool Chest makes a great addition to your reloading room. The eight (8) drawers can hold the many small tools and accessories used for hand-loading, such as bushings, shims, uniforming tools, mandrels, neck-turners and more. A deeper top compartment (under the lid) holds wrenches and other larger tools. The price is just $79.99. A lockable sliding wood panel fits in place to cover the drawers when not in use. This locking panel also secures the drawers during transport.

4. Midsouth Shooters Supply – Nikon 16-48x60mm Spotting Scope

AccurateShooter Deals of week bargain discount savings Nikon Spotting Scope

With Nikon’s “Instant Savings” Promotion in effect through November 11th, you can snag this compact Nikon 16-48X ProStaff Spotting Scope Kit (with tripod and case) for just $249.95 with free shipping. With a length of just 12.3″, and weighing a mere 21.9 ounces, this is a good spotting scope for hunters or pistol shooters who prefer a straight-through view. The $249.95 price is a steal.

5. Southern Shooters — 17 HMR Ruger American Rimfire

AccurateShooter Deals of week bargain discount savings Ruger American Rifle 17 HMR

With ballistics far superior to a .22 LR, the 17 HMR is ideal for Prairie Dogs and small varmints out to 180 yards or so. Now you can get a reliable, name brand 17 HMR rifle for under $250.00. That’s right, Southern Shooters is selling the 17 HMR Ruger American Rimfire, with 22″ barrel, for just $244.21. FFL required. For other vendors with this rifle, CLICK HERE.

6. Amazon.com — $39.39 Double Rifle Case

AccurateShooter Deals of week bargain discount savings Rifle Case Amazon

This tactical-style Double Rifle Case carries two (2) scoped rifles securely. With a main compartment measuring 48″ x 3″ x 12.5″, this double case is big enough to handle full-sized rifle. There is a padded layer between the two compartments, and the case features a shoulder strap as well as carry handles. NOTE: There are THREE color options: Black, Green, and Tan. Be sure to select color when ordering.

7. Powder Valley Inc. — SK .22 LR Rimfire Ammo $5.90/box

AccurateShooter Deals of week bargain discount savings Ruger American Rifle 17 HMR

Looking for good-quality, affordable rimfire ammo? Our friends at Powder Valley Inc. (PVI) have you covered. PVI recently obtained a large quantity of German-made SK Standard Plus .22 LR ammo. This is very good ammo for the price. To order, click on “Specials” from the PVI home page

8. Buck Knives — Model 110 Folding Hunter

AccurateShooter Deals of week bargain discount savings Buck Knives 110 Folding Hunter Knife Brass

Read the nearly 1000 customer reviews on Amazon.com, and you’ll understand why the Model 110 Folding Hunter is one of the most popular knives ever produced by Buck Knives. The USA-made, lifetime-warrantied Model 110 features a 3.75″ blade, Dymondwood handle, polished brass bolsters, and leather carrying sheath. It’s a bargain at $27.99.

Permalink Gear Review, Hot Deals 2 Comments »
October 5th, 2015

Case Trimmer “How-To” Videos from L.E. Wilson

L.E. Wilson Micrometer stainless steel case trimmer

L.E. Wilson, makers of hand dies, case trimmers and other precision reloading tools, has released a series of informational videos. These videos show how to assemble and operate L.E. Wilson tools including the new Wilson stainless steel case trimmer with micrometer adjustment (photo below). The first video explains the operation of the Wilson trimmer and shows how to initially assemble the tool, attach the handle, and set the cut length.

This second video shows how to set up the new stainless Wilson trimmer with micrometer cut-length control. The new micrometer feature allows you to set the cartridge overall trim length with great precision. If you are trimming a variety of different cartridge types, the micrometer cut length control comes in very handy. In seconds you can “dial in” different trim lengths, without messing around with set screw or locking rings. Fine adjustment is in increments of .001″ is done with the the Micrometer. Gross adjustment is done with with the stop screw. If you go from a very short case to a very long case, you will need to reposition the stop screw. Note: In addition to the videos shown here, L.E. Wilson has a video showing how to mount a the trimmer assembly and case holder arm on a base.

KEY FEATURES of L.E. Wilson Stainless Case Trimmer with Micrometer:

  • New long-lasting stainless finish with micrometer adjustment.
  • New increased width on Stop Nut. This provides for a firm stop.
  • Larger stop screw with Black Oxide Coating, adjustment from 3/8″ (old) to 1/2″.
  • New 304 Stainless Steel Handle standard on all trimmers shipped after July 2013.
  • Made in the U.S.A. with American steel.

Along with its case trimmer video, L.E. Wilson has produced three videos showing how to use Wilson cartridge case gages. This series of Case Gage Videos show how to use the gage to check headspace and properly set shoulder bump with a full-length sizing die.

Videos found by EdLongrange. We welcome reader submissions.

Permalink - Videos, Reloading Post comment »
October 5th, 2015

$78,000 Bolt-Action Double Rifle — Marvel in Metal

double rifle

double rifleHere’s something you don’t see every day — a bolt-action, repeating, double rifle. This amazing twin-barreled bolt-gun has a closing mechanism that locks two separate bolt bodies into the chambers of the right and left barrels. Yes there are two firing pins, two ejectors, two extractors, and two triggers. We’re not sure how one jumbo camming system closes two bolts, but there might be a geared center shaft rotating both right and left bolt bodies at the same time (but in opposite directions). Perhaps one of our gunsmith readers can explain how this system works.

This Rifle Has TWO Barrels and TWO Bolts
double rifle

Just $78,000 at “Half-off Pricing”
This unique firearm, chambered in .416 Remington, was sold a few years back on Gunbroker.com for $78,000. That astronomical sum is just half the original cost, according to the seller. Crafted by Fuchs, this double rifle has 22″ barrels and weighs 11.5 pounds. Deep-chiseled, full-coverage engraving decorates the receiver. So, if you have a cool $78 grand to burn you can acquire a very rare firearm — we doubt if you’ll find another one of these anytime soon.

Permalink Gunsmithing, Hunting/Varminting 6 Comments »
October 4th, 2015

Savage Model 11 Scout Rifle

Savage Scout Rifle Model 11
Click for full-screen photo.

Savage has started to ship its new .308 Win Model 11 Scout rifle. Based on the concept popularized by Col. Jeff Cooper, the Savage Scout is designed to be short and handy, with an 18″ barrel and forward-mounted optic. This new Savage was unveiled at SHOT Show in January, 2015, but production models are just now starting to appear at dealers.

Savage Scout Rifle Model 11

The Model 11 Scout comes complete with iron sights (blade front, Williams peep rear). A cantilevered Picatinny rail accepts forward-mounted, long eye-relief scopes. Available in dark Tan or OD Green*, the Model 11 Scout comes with a 10-round detachable magazine (see below). The only chambering currently offered is .308 Winchester. The gun ships with a screw-on muzzle brake. Rifle weight (without optic) is a modest 7.8 pounds.

Read the rest of this entry »

Permalink News 6 Comments »
October 4th, 2015

In Praise of the .30-06 — ‘The Old Warhorse Ain’t Dead Yet’

.30-06 cartridge IMR 4350

This article first appeared in 2014. We are reprising it at the request of many readers who are fans of the .30-06 cartridge.

The “Old Warhorse” .30-06 Springfield cartridge is not dead. That’s the conclusion of Forum member Rick M., who has compared the 1000-yard performance of his .30-06 rifle with that of a rig chambered for the more modern, mid-sized 6.4×47 Lapua cartridge. In 12-16 mph full-value winds, the “inefficient and antiquated” .30-06 ruled. Rick reports:

“I was shooting my .30-06 this past Sunday afternoon from 1000 yards. The wind was hitting 12-16 mph with a steady 9 O’clock (full value) wind direction. My shooting buddy Jeff was shooting his 6.5×47 Lapua with 123gr Scenar bullets pushed by Varget. Jeff needed 13 MOA left windage to keep his 6.5x47L rounds inside the Palma 10 Ring. By contrast I only needed 11.5 MOA left windage with my .30-06. I was shooting my ’06 using the 185gr Berger VLD target bullet with H4350. I managed the same POI yet the .30-caliber bullet only needed 11.5 MOA windage. That’s significant. From this experience I’ve concluded that the Old Warhorse ain’t quite dead yet!”

.30-06 cartridge IMR 4350

Rick likes his “outdated” .30-06 rifle. He says it can deliver surprisingly good performance at long range:

“To many of the younger generation, the Old Warhorse .30-06 is ‘outdated’ but I can guarantee that the .30-06 Springfield is a VERY ACCURATE cartridge for 1000-yard shooting (and even out further if need be). With some of the advanced powders that we have today, the .30-06 will surprise many shooters with what it’s capable of doing in a good rifle with the right rate of twist. My rifle has a 1:10″ twist rate and I had it short-throated so that, as the throat erodes with time, I could just seat the bullets out further and keep right on shooting. My recent load is Berger 185gr Target VLDs pushed by IMR 4350. This is a very accurate load that moves this bullet along at 2825 fps.”

.30-06 cartridge IMR 4350

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Competition 11 Comments »
October 3rd, 2015

Are These Really the TEN BEST Bolt-Action Rifles?

A while back, RifleShooter online magazine published a list of the purported Ten Best Bolt-Action Rifles of All Time. Ten classic rifle designs (including the Remington 700 and Winchester Model 70) were featured with a paragraph or two explaining their notable features.

Ten 10 best bolt action rifles shooter

These Top 10 lists are always controversial. While most readers might approve of half the entries, there are always some items on the Top 10 list that some readers would challenge. Here is RifleShooter’s Top 10 list. What do you think? Are there some other bolt-actions that are more deserving?

1. Springfield M1903
2. Mauser 98
3. Winchester Model 70
4. Remington Model 700
5. Weatherby V

6. Sako L61/AV
7. Savage Model 110
8. Ruger M77
9. Tikka T3
10. Mannlicher-Schonauer


Permalink - Articles, Gunsmithing 6 Comments »